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Firms Team for Next-Generation Payment Services

Addressing the increasingly popular online payment niche, Net security specialist VeriSign Inc. teamed with American Express Co. and Ariba Inc. Monday to deliver the first card payment processing utility for online B2B transactions.

B2B e-commerce giant Ariba will add VeriSign's B2B payment connectivity services with the Ariba Commerce Services Network to process American Express payments.

This arrangement will allow Ariba to exchange and process American Express payments electronically through Ariba CSN, which will result in a shortcut through the authorization, settlement and reconciliation processes.

The new solution, which has not yet been named, will enable buyers and suppliers to exchange payment transactions with each other, allowing requests for payment to be triggered at shipment time, based on established purchase order prices.

Buyers will benefit from reduced transaction cycle times and ease in transaction reconciliation by paying only for goods delivered.

"Through this integrated e-purchasing and payment solution, companies will now have the confidence to migrate key business processes -- such as ordering, invoicing, payment and settlement -- over the Internet," said Mac Schuessler, vice president of E-Payment for American Express Corporate Services.

"This integrated solution allows us not only to enable true online transaction processing, but is also paving the way for future payment services."

Ariba said the deal will help it attract clients looking for secure, cost-effective marketplaces on the Net.

In keeping with its goal to be the market leader in secure online transactions, VeriSign last week announced that it would offer a range of new products and services to safeguard transactions over networks and allow them to be accessed from various types of online devices.

The new products will allow financial institutions, health care organizations and B2B marketplaces to store and access private information from most Internet-enabled devices, such as cell phones and personal digital assistants, anywhere.

The firm currently markets its B2B Trust Services, which enable real-time proof of the identity and privileges of buyers and suppliers through the distribution of digital certificates and secure online payment transactions between businesses.